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Fox Files

News/Business. Actress Jennifer Esposito, ('Blue Bloods') talks about her struggle with celiac disease.

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China 18, North Korea 13, Jennifer 11, North Koreans 11, Kim Jong-il 8, South Korea 6, Jennifer Esposito 3, United States 3, Seoul 3, Chantix 3, Us 3, Kim Jong-un 2, Samsung 2, New York 2, Verizon 2, Koreans 2, Lg 2, Mike Kim 1, Dixon 1, Mick Kim 1,
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  FOX News    Fox Files    News/Business. Actress Jennifer Esposito, ('Blue  
   Bloods') talks about her struggle with celiac disease.  

    November 25, 2012
    2:00 - 3:00am PST  

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>> it has been called part of the axis of evil and a socialist nightmare. three generations from the same family the most repressive place on earth. now this 20 something armed with nukes is the dictator of north korea. our cameras go inside the under ground railroad. >> helping north koreans get out, the secret groups. this is extremely dangerous. >> for the first time this detector speaks. >> we escaped over the river at the narrowest part. >> a baumanana baby from the 19.
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jennifer he esposito have in common? >> he had the heist case i have ever seen. >> we look at the medical mystery story of celiac disease. it's what happens when food and what's in it becomes your enemy. >> >> this is "fox files." >> december 28th, 2011, sub zero temperatures and a winter storm grip north korea as the world's most secretive and oppressive country laid to rest its supreme leader kim jong-il. the world got a rare glimpse inside this sealed off nation, historical throngs of north koreans line the 25 mile route in the procession in a ritual of
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bizarre mourning but it is unclear if the wailing was genuine or motivated fear. >> people probably understand what would happen if they didn't show sufficient grief. >> much of it was forced. the state wanted this behavior. >> and the state was working over time in the days after kim jong-il's death. they were ensuring that north koreans did not deviate from the socio ideology of behavior. >> north korea is the single most closed repressed society in history. >> every thought and action is monitored. there's a fear of a blackmer said that will show up at your door one day. >> there are tens of thousands of christians there? >> there are churches in north korea under ground. it is the most persecuted church
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in the world. you have tens of thousands of churches in the goulage. >> it is probably like anything you saw in the 20th century. >> most important is creating a new personality around this man the father's first son about him little is known. >> we don't know how old he is. we assume's in his late 20s. >> he now commands the world's 4th largest army with a nuclear arsenal with 6 bombs. the popular 22 million act with blind devotion to the new leader. some are begin to go show unprecedented consent.
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>> the new under ground railroad is a network of safe houses and secret groups helping north koreans get out. it is among christian missionaries. >> we tracked down one man who risked everything who escaped from his family. >> how scared were you when you were crossing the border? >> i knew i had to cross to the other river. >> they are risking their life. >> korea has been a nation guarded by bashed wires armies and unresolved war stretching back almost 70 years to the end of world war ii. >> they defeated by the end of world war ii. it was divided north and south. >> while americans took over the south the united states commanded the north under
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leadership of 34-year-old radical kim ill sung. >> he was one of the most dominant dictators. >> korean study cans at ohio state university. >> we talked to the stories about this personality of stalin but nothing compared to what kim ill jong did. >> it was the same day the titanic was sinking in north atlantic. >> kim ill sung was a christian. his mother and father took him to church. >> they covered asia and authored the book. >> he was a christian as a young man. >> hard to believe. >> there were many christians in korea. it was known as the jerusalem of the east. >> by 1948 he appointed head of the korean workers party.
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>> over the next decades the cult of personality established around kim ill sung rivalled any of the companies. >> in 1965 the north korean government started the bizarre i had yolg. >> they need to determine the future of the country and advance the socialist revolution on their own. we have a huge white monument in one brick of the monument a symbol of every day of the life of kim ill sung there are two education centers. think tank everything revolved around embedding a north korean society ideology of tuchang. >> after decades of enslaving the north korean people kim ill sung died.
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>> there was genuine grieving kim il sung died. people did look at him as almost a super natural being. >> thhis successor would try to become god like himself. >> kim jong-il is the oldest son. >> kim jong-il was said to have been born on the sacred mountain. this is where by korean legend the korean nation that began many thousands of years ago. >> the small mountain cabin where it is claimed his mother gave birth is today a shrine. >> he was born in russia when his father was with the russian military. >> by the early 1980s he had significant niche for himself in the structure. >> kim jong-il was a character of fun to a lot of people in the western world because he was short and had that boof fant
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style hair and wore elevator shoes but he was in truth a very brutal dictator. >> he has expensive taste in everything from alcohol to t cigarettes to expensive boats. >> it was reported he liked american culture. >> he loved american film. he supposedly had a library of many thousands of films. he once had a south korean actress, favorite south korean actress abducted. she was kidnapped from a beach in hong kong and taken to north korea and required to become basically his actress slave. >> they had kidnapping of people that's how they went about it with film and with migrate uncle. >> mick kim's own familiar licks combreernsed the cruelty of the north korean regime. >> migrate uncle was a lead engineer. >> grandmother's mother. >> my mom and others and my
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family told me about how during the korean war the north koreans came across the border into south korea and they were looking for people that could help them build their infrastructure so they took them into north korea. i often tell my gratalk to my grandmother go the story she has never seen or heard from her brother since. >> the country has been a living hell for millions. >> the famine of the late 1990s killed more than a tenth of the population of north korea. >> we estimate 2-3 north koreans starved. >> we hear stories of people starving to death people eating tree bark to survive. in the worst case scenario the stories of cannibalism. >> it has gotten better than worse but it has always been terrible. >> the dynasty continues today with kim jong unthe spitting
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image of his grandfather. >> one of the first acts is the shoot to kill order. >> i think he is tear fied of revolt. >> if you are sent back from china into north korea what could happen to you? >> the punishmhmhmhmhm with verizon.
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>> it has been almost a year since kim jong-un the third son of kim jong-il took power in north korea after his father's death. >> the other sons were perceived to be losers and this was the one who had the potential to be a leader. >> there are some who look at this as an opportunity perhaps he wouldn't be as ruthless. >> he made some statements that indicate he is a little hipper than his father was. he allowed his wife to be shown on tv. he appeared with life size character churs -- caricatures
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of mickey house. >> he amowed them women to dress in a more western fashion. >> there is little difference between him and his father and grandfather. one of the first things he did upon succeeding his father was to issue a shoot to kill order to north korean order guards. he said shoot anybody in the back who is trying to escape. >> they risk everything. they know when they leave north korea they are risking death. >> in 2001 mike kim left everything left behind in chicago and moved to northern china to help north korean detectors. >> lived in the china border hiding out with the north koreans sharing room with livestock in some periods. >> he chronicled some experiences in a book escaping north korea. >> for most americans under ground railroad has a certain history for us you think about 1800's and slavery and the fight
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to get north of the base mays done dixon line. how would you describe the under ground railroad from north korea and china? >> it's 6,000 miles running from north korea through china through southeast asia. >> it's a network of safe houses and secret groups. >> there are contacts along this entire root to help and to aid north koreans. >> some within your network some within another network that is willing to help, and you know people in those cities that are willing to risk housing the north koreans. >> mike founded crossing borders a christian organization devoted to helping north korean refugees. this man whom we will call pong is currently the organization's director. >> why are you in this? >> i help north korean people in china. it's illegal for any one to even feed a north korean refugee. >> if your identity was revealed? >> i could go to jail and more
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importantly the people that are working for us in china would go to jail and north koreans could be executed. we work threw true the under gr church in china we consider ourselves the first link to the under ground railroad. >> when i would first meet a north korean they would come to our shelter they would be scared out of their minds. they would sit as far away from me at the other end of the room as possible. >> in 2008 crossing borders helped this man a 46-year-old north korean detector who fled his country. we agreed not to say his name. >> i had to flee because i helped others from the government. that is a political crime. >> getting out of north korea has the first hurdle. how do they do that? >> one is you can pay for bribes, boerldrder guards on th
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north korean and china side. the other way during the winter the river freezes over. people walk across the ice. >> i went over in broad daylight my daughter another person and myself. we went to the river and pretended to wash our faces and escaped over the narrowest part. >> he interviewed a detector in his small apartment in seoul, south korea. >> how scared were you when you were crossing the border? >> i knew in order to live i had to cross the river and get to the other side. as soon as i got over the first thought that popped into my head was oh, yes, i am alive. >> once you cross from north korea into china it's not like the doors have been flung open for these people. there are dangers in china, too. >> they have zero tolerance policy toward north koreans in china. >> not only the police but china has seasons where they announce to their citizens along the borders to report north korean
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people to them so they can earn money. >> if you were sent back from china into north korea what could happen to you? >> committed treason by leaving the country and the punishment is death. >> his wife and second daughter crossed over into china almost a year later. >> we had an elder leader she called a local church. >> what happens to family members in north korea if it is discovered one of their family members has managed to escape successfully. >> their families would suffer. >> they will face most brutal torture right out of world war ii concentration camps. >> befoafter we fled my brotherd sisters and in-laws were taken to the intelligence officer interrogated. my brother in law was beaten so severely he is practically in a wheelchair. >> with the help they were
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hidden in northern china preparing to escape from that country. in august 2009 they boarded a train headg south with strict instructions. >> thoeld us we could not take anything especially not a cell phone. if you are captured they will be able to trace all of the numbers track down the people who helped you. >> the family spent a week on the train heading toward loose. but -- laos. but to get into china they had to cross the border on foot. >> it is a tough hike. >> we arrived at the embassy though gave us temporary passports to get to seoul. >> the whole family flew to south korea. the detectors knew life after a year and a half on the road to freedom had begun. >> when you arrive at international airport and step on south korean soil for the first time what was your
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thought? >> i gave a shout of joy. i could finally breet. >> it is worth it to see those who obtained freedom. >> coming up, technology is starting to crack open the hermit kingdom.
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>> seoul south korea yaw is 26 miles from north korea. 22 years after he led the communist regime in new york they became citizens of south korea in may 2010. >> what was going through your mind when you held your korean citizenship for the first time? >> it was very emotional. it was a strange feeling to
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become a citizen in the country. >> he and his family are adjusting to life in freedom but sadly the same month they arrived in seoul his 7-year-old daughter died from an unknown infection. >> i always think about all of the things i couldn't give her and that weighs heavily on my mind. >> that ended a long long journey. there are so many mixed emotions for refugees to come out of north korea to china to south korea. >> three generations of the kim family have maintained an iron grip. but it is not completely inpen et trabl. >> balloons have been going across the dmz since the korean war. originally it was with leaflets telling people about what life was like in south korea. >> one of the women i interviewed her job was to pick
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up anti north korean leaflets flown on balloons to north korea. how could you pick up these anti north korean leaflets up? >> because the regime taught me if i touched anything from south korea with my hands they would rot and fall off. >> today the balloons have gone high-tech. they are often gps guided and can drop the information that they contain on a more targeted area. >> new technology is starting to crack open the hermit kingdom. >> the cell phones and internet and other things are giving them windows to the outside world they never had before. if kim jong-il takes them down a path of slightest civilization it could mean much more radical change than he or the political elites are willing to accept. >> the north korean power elite
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and military have too much invested in the repression of this society. >> it appears kim jong-un has urged some of his father's generals. this man was often seen along side the new leader and then mysteriously fired from all of his duties in july of 2012. other powerful figures remain. another seen at kim jong-il's funeral is the general secretary of the korean worker's party. he's the man who over saw the development of north korea's nuclear bomb. >> there has been very little indication that he is willing to open the country up. he certainly hasn't stopped with the country nuclear or missile program. the crack down on the people internally still continues. >> as long as it does
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organizations like crossing borders will be there to help. >> what does your faith mean to what you are doing in china? a oo it has everything to do wh with what we do. we believe god has created everyone equal and god created me just the same as god created the north korean refugee. >> we have been able to change lives and i would do it all over again. it is very rewarding. >> many kri koreans look forward to a future where their country is unified. >> absolutely. the vast majority of north koreans wish for that day. >> coming up, the medical mystery story that almost destroyed a famous hollywood actress. >> this left undiagnosed like i have been for years creates havoc, the place i am in now. >> this tough as nails hockey player. the disease began to really take the disease began to really take a holdldld [ rosa ] i'm rosa and i quit smoking with chantix.
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now back to fox files.
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♪ >> what does a famous hollywood actress, a tough fearless hockey player, and a woman who grew up in the 1930s have in common? they are all in the center of a medical mystery which may effect 3 million people living in the united states. we begin with jennifer esposito's story. >> you are new york girl all of the way. >> i am. born in brooklyn and raised in staten island. i wanted to come to the city and start my acting career. >> growing up in a middle class family actress jennifer esposito caught everyone's attention with television shows like spin city to award winning films like "crash." and her most recent work on cbs's "blue blood." while her hollywood star was rising she haved suffering from an illness that was slowly
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debilitating her. >> when did you realize or your family realize that something was wrong? >> when i was a teenager i had problems with getting colds and infections, sinus infections all of the time. so much so that i was hospitalized with monday no. >> she would suffer and as a family we would say, okay, she is sick again. >> susan is jennifer's older sister. >> at a young age she was suffering with stomach issues. she had mood swings, she had anxiety. no answers. >> how many tests? how many doctors visits are we talking about? hundreds? thousands? >> i couldn't guess the amount between colonoscopies and enemas. >> did it take a toll on you and your family? >> yes. we didn't have an understanding of it because none of the
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doctors she had gone to kaep came up with a proper diagnosis. >> the money i have spent in trying to make people listen, and i would sit with therapists over and over but every time they would give me a prozac or xanax. i would say that's not it. there is something else going on. >> as her career soared jennifer still struggled with her health. it was after 19 long agonizing years a doctor finally gave her an accurate diagnosis. >> i was so ill i could barely walk in there. i think she really saw something two-days after that she had called and said, celiac's disease. you have the highest case i have ever seen. i don't know how you are living like this. i had no idea what she was
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talking about. >> what is it? >> it is an auto immune disease linked diabetes or roum toyed arthritis. >> she swe sat down with the dir of center for celiac research at university of maryland. their studies show that one percent of the population or one in 133 people in the united states have the disease. only a small fraction know they have it. >> we don't know what makes people sick with diabetes or ms but it is undisputable is the auto immune process in people with celiac's disease. >> what is gluten. that's what we hear about most. >> it is the most abundant in specific grains like wheat, rye and barley. we are notable to completely
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digest this. that is why it creates so many problems. >> when you have celiac's disease it damaged or kills the villi the villi around the small intestines. it takes the nutrients from the food. you are starving yourself and not absorbing nutrients. you have a leaky gut which basically is to put it small holes in the gut where when i eat and when i digest anything that slips through those holes and goes into the bloodstream my auto immune system -- it feels as if it is getting attacked so it attacks it. >> where is the biggest source of gluten in our diet comes from? >> biggest source, bread, pasta, pizza, beer, cookies, bagels. these are the obvious source. the other thing that makes it even more complicated is gluten is used as a filler.
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it is a wonderful natural filler you can mix in prepacked foods. >> you bind it together. >> wheat gluten. >> it is great stuff. but your body can't tolerate it. >> the baby didn't have colic. he had celiac disease? >> besides celiac disease there are two other forms one is a gluten wheat allergy the other is newer and known as gluten sensitivity. it also causes the immune system to react and create problems. >> the wheatolgy there's a blood test there's a simple screening test that is very very good to identify gluten sensitivity. >> do you think jennifer's case got to that place where they spent years trying to find a diagnosis. >> even when she was diagnosed going gluten free it took much longer than expected to go back to a more acceptable life. her body took a major hit.
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>> here she is this successful actress in terms of stereotyping, why don't y you no eat this? why are you feeling faint? the women's body is collapsing from the inside out. >> that's right. she had a serious type for a young woman in this kind of business. you are really too finicky or you are exaggerating and so on and so forth. >> what are the symptoms? if someone has xyz you demand your doctor check you for celiac's disease. >> the symptoms can go from bloating to diarrhea, constipation to no stomach issues which is tricky for most people. i say any time you are feeling sur mountable feeling of exhaustion there's something going on. if you think that there is a possibility that you have it you
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want to be safer rather than sorry. you need to get a proper diagnosis, because this left undiagnosed like i have been for years creates havoc, the place i am in now. >> today with more people being diagnosed with celiac disease the market for gluten free products has exploded. >> if you look at the market north america in 2002 the market was very limited. it was roughly $100 million. >> this year alone is valued at $4.2 billion. a gluten free lifestyle isn't cheap. >> i do not leave the health food market with under $100 and i probably go food shopping 3 or 4 times a week. >> that's just for you. >> that's just for me. that's just for me. that's fresh fruit and vegetables. i always buy organic. this is expensive. >> mock files when jennifer's battle with celiac disease made headlines. what do the hockey player and
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banana baby of the with verizon.
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hurry in this saturday and sunday for great deals. likehe lucid by lg, free. or the galaxy nexus by samsung, free. this weekend, get the best deals on the best devices on the best network. exclusively at verizon. >> it was like someone took a veil off my face.
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>> mickey redmond is no stranger to pain. he won two stanley cups playing for the montreal canadiens and ended his career as a top goal scorer for the detroit red wings. >> the red wings put a lot of pressure on redmond. he is the voice for hockey fox 2k50e9. >> when were you finally diagnosed with celiac? >> i remember going to many, many different doctors. at the time we are talking early 70s. they would say you have got this, this or this or this over here. i said well what is this over here? that was we don't know. as it turns out 20-years later around 1994 i got diagnosed with celiac. >> going back to when you were younger in your 20s you had the symptoms what was going on? >> the lifestyle we led as
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professional athletes in those days wasn't exactly a lifestyle that would be copyed by a lot of people or should be. there was cigarettes involved and few beers and you are not supposed so feel real good when you do stuff like that. as a result you get used to feeling poorly. >> what clued you in, though? this is a little bit beyond oh sure i am a hockey player we are drinking beer and smoking cigarettes. >> the disease began to really take a hold of me. i broke out -- you get really bad and sensitive to it. i was sleeping a lot. >> as he experienced early on gluten is found in many other products besides food. >> with celiac everything that goes into your mouth and is ingested but you have to worry about mouthwash, toothpaste, shampoo all of those things.
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i remember six months later standing in the bathroom still getting sick wondering i am clean as a wiles. might have been a bottle of lister reason or something like that. i went, wow. wait a minute. the alcohol or whatever is in it depends on the source and all that. >> just like mickey jennifer is always careful with what she eats which for her is even more challenging. fox files accompanied her on a visit with her doctor. >> we are going to go over your oral gees in addition to the celac, gluten and dairy. we have almonds, beef, chocolate, egg yolk, bananas, broccoli, peanuts, onions, cod fish, soybeans and chicken in addition to the barley rye oats and wheat and all of the other gluten grades. >> it is ridiculous.
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>> as a result she is constantly creating her own gluten free recipes. >> look at these babies. >> jennifer's cookies. >> your chocolate chip cookies. >> i love these cookies. i swgod. >> well done. >> thank you. >> should we do the cookie dance. >> i know, i know. >> after i make some i am like, whoa. i am serious. >> someone said you can never have this for the rest of your life? >> i would be done. >> in a weird twist of fate little did they know they had something common with this won. >> i was born in 1936 and i came to the hospital when i was 9 months old. >> meet barbara hudson also known as a banana baby. during the 1930s she was one of the first reported cases at the university of maryland where they treated children with the mysterious symptoms that we now know as celiac disease.
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>> do you remember the symptoms your mother told you what was happening to you? >> evidently i had diarrhea, i was not gaining weight. so then they told my mother to bring me down to the university hospital to drop me off don't come see her for six weeks. but i said for over 9 months and the hospital became my home. >> after you left the hospital, once they leased you what diet did they put you on? >> baked bananas and bavarian buttermilk. >> the routine was she would bake 3 bananas a day. i would eat one for breakfast one for lunch and one banana for dinner. >> how long did you stay on this banana diet? >> for about two years then the pediatrician said he thought we could add other foods to my diet. he would add a different food each week. and finally at the age of 6 i
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had my first ice cream and milk. a >> what did you think? >> i thought it was wonderful. >> why bananas? >> bausz they contain all of the salt, the nutrients and some protein that allows you to survive. >> jennifer, mickey and barbara have each shed light on the mystery of celiac disease. >> i tell you my day has been consumed with bringing information -- between a blog, jennifer's voice.org, jennifer foundation on celiac education everything i do to bring awareness. >> i do spend a lot of time talking to people on the phone about it. i speak to team about it. i am more than happy to do that to help them get through the early stages of this. especially younger kids. >> if there is a good gluten
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free recipe i will pass it on to somebody else with celiac disease so they can have something fun to eat as well as being good for them. >> jennifer's battle with blue bloods makes headlines. our exclusive with ♪ [ male announcer ] you've reached the age where you don't back down from a challenge. this is the age of knowing how to make things happen. sowhy let erectile dysfunction get in your way? talk to your doctor about viagra. 20 million men already have. ask your doctor if your heart is healthy enough for sex. do not take viagra if you take nitrates for chest pain; it may cause an unsafe drop in blood pressure. side effects include headache, flushing, upset stomach, and abnormal vision.
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>> that is jennifer esposito starring along side donnie wahlburg on blue blood. little did we know back in september when fox files interviewed her about celiac disease there was turmoil behind the scenes. in october they put out this statement. >> jennifer informed us she is only available to work on a
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limited part-time schedule. as a result she is unable to perform the demands of her roles and we regretfully had to put her character on a leave of absence. she is a wonderfully talented actress and we hope she will be able to return at some point in the future. >> jennifer sat down exclusively with fox files to give us her side of the story. >> when blue blood goes on on friday night twitter starts going crazy. someone released pictures of him and a new partner. they don't like that. pem don't like change especially with donnie and what had happened. there was such a surge in where is jackie, actually go jackie was trending one night. not blue bloods, go jackie was trending. cbs the next day put out a statement i saw it and immediately was like, oh, really? no. no, no. let me out of my contract and put me back to work or pay me
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what you owe me. >> she took to twitter with her response. >> cbs put me on unpaid leave and has blocked me from working anywhere else after my dock said you needed reduced schedule celiac. >> they have a job to get it done. you don't think i could do it in the 2, 3 days i am offering? i get it you have to replace me. but that's not what happened. what happened was ugliness. >> tell me the day you collapsed onset. >> i got in the van i fell asleep on the way to the set. i felt my head spinning. i got out took a step and my knees just went down to the floor i caught myself in a fence. they brought me into the neighboringup room again i fell. they said i'll get the medic. we were like there's nothing --
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unless you can kaur me of celiac disease we have been trying to tell you there's no medic right now. they had to carry me into the car and bring me to the doctor where i went and i was there for 7 hours. >> where does it stand with you and cbs right now as we speak? >> last week i believe i was told i was on suspension which meant i am still in contract not being paid. i can't start working on any tv show on network. i can do a film or broadway or something on cable that doesn't go in the 10:00 time spot. they have my contract without pay yes it is illegal but they knew i didn't have the money or means to sue them. i have been in the business for 20-years. there has been so many things of injustice that happens in this business. it's what you sign up for, it is what it is. this, though, is something that
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is not about me i feel. this is about a disease that people don't understand and what went on after it makes me
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